Saturday, March 25, 2017

Delicious and Filling Protein Powered Pancakes

Over the past many, many years I have experimented with breakfast foods and breakfast recipes. I have learned that my first meal of the day needs to be filled with protein.  Oh, I have tried various carb-filled delights such as pancakes with fruit and maple syrup, or stuffed French toast with whipped cream... and as delicious and filling as I find those things while I am eating them, an hour later I am shaking and HANGRY... with low blood sugar and a headache.  And quite miserable.  And I make everyone around me miserable too, until I get something else to eat.

So, I know that my breakfast needs protein.  Lots of protein.  On days I work out in the morning, I normally have a shake made with some kind of protein powder.  If I use a whey powder, I make it with nut milk and some kind of fruit.  If I use a vegan powder that is higher in carbs I usually add only water.

After my workout, I will have an another small protein-filled meal... usually eggs or egg whites with spinach, or squash, and perhaps some turkey bacon.

But on days I don't work out, I like to have one solid meal in the morning and then not eat again till noon.  I have been trying out different foods to make sure I have my nutritional bases covered... protein, carbs, and a bit of fat... enough to get me through a busy morning but not weigh me down. It needs to have lots of protein, some carbs, some fat.  A good balance of all three.

I love pancakes.  But I have not found a mix that is both high protein and gluten-free that is anywhere near affordable, so I have been trying various mixtures of ingredients, and I think I have finally come up with something that is worthy of sharing.

I have make this same recipe 3 different mornings now and find it not only tastes great, but it also fills me up and keeps me fuelled, easily, through several hours.  Now, admittedly, it is kind of time consuming to make a new batch every time I want some, so I have started to pre-measure the dry ingredients for a few batches and keep them in sealed bags in the pantry. That way I can grab one, add the wet ingredients, and start cooking within a couple of minutes. Cleanup is easy too.

I weigh gluten-free oats and then grind them into flour in my food processor.  Then I mix them with the rest of the dry ingredients and bag them up.  When I want to make a batch of cakes, I mash some banana, then beat up some egg whites, add the dry ingredients and cook the cakes in a pre-heated pan that has been coated with a bit of non-stick spray.

If you don't have a banana, I am pretty sure that an equal amount of pumpkin puree or unsweetened applesauce would work as well.  Of course, the N.I. would be slightly different.

I use a vanilla whey protein powder. You could try another flavor if you like. If you use unflavored, then add a bit of vanilla extract or almond extract to your wet ingredients.

Here are the amounts you need to make 4 nice pancakes.  And yes, they freeze.  Make a huge batch and freeze them. That would make mornings even easier, right?

Protein Powered  Pancakes


Protein Powered Pancakes
makes 1 serving of 4 cakes

 Dry Ingredients:
  • 40g oats ground into flour (about 1/3 to 1/2 cup)
  • 16g whey protein powder (about 1/2 scoop)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • liberal dash of cinnamon
Wet Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup egg whites
  • 60 g ripe banana, mashed (about 1/2 small)
Instructions:
  1. Pour egg whites into mixing bowl and beat till a bit fluffy with fork or whisk.
  2. Add mashed banana and beat a bit more.
  3. Add the dry ingredients, mix well.
  4. Make 4 individual pancakes.  Use a 1/4 cup measure to spoon batter into prepared pan.  Cook for a couple of minutes and flip over to cook second side. Remove to plate and cover to keep warm. Repeat for all 4 cakes.
  5. Serve with favorite toppings.
Per 4 cake serving, without toppings.
Weight Watchers Smart Points =  8.
Calories 324;
Fat 4g;
Saturated Fat 1g;
Carbohydrates 42g;
Sugar 9g;
Protein 33g

Protein Powered Pancakes
Cook the pancakes one at a time in a preheated pan.

Protein Powered Pancakes
I like sugar free syrup on my pancakes... but you could try fruit or yogurt.

Protein Powered Pancakes
Dig in!



Are you pancake fan or do you prefer waffles?





Sunday, January 22, 2017

Slow Cooker Chicken Coconut Curry

I have just put all of the ingredients for this dish into my slow cooker and set it to cook. I love this meal. It is my third time making it so I thought it was about time I shared it with you.  Slow Cooker Chicken Coconut Curry is a recipe I found in a local food market newsletter, but I have altered it somewhat to simplify the ingredient list and the instrucions, so I will share it the way I make it my own kitchen.

I admit it does take a bit of time preparing the ingredients.  But once that is done you just layer it all in the slow cooker and let it simmer. So simple.  Just before I serve it I cook some vegetables to add to the dish.... peas, carrots, green beans, snow peas... whatever you select will work just fine.

And, I like to add a spoonful of plain Greek yogurt to my curry dishes too, just before serving.  It makes a soupy stew really creamy.  Mmmmm.

I do love the aroma of a nice light curry coming from my slow cooker... tantalizing, especially on a gloomy and cool Winter day!

I used chicken breasts here but thighs would be fine too. And if you don't have chicken stock, grab a boullion cube and make some!  I also like a light coconut milk, but if you only have full fat, go ahead and use it... just make the adjustment if you need the nutritional information or Smart Points values for tracking.



Slow Cooker Chicken Coconut Curry
makes 6 servings

Ingredients:
  • 16 ounces of boneless skinless chicken cut into cubes
  • 3 medium white potatoes, scrubbed and cuts into cubes
  • 1 medim onion, peeled and sliced vertically
  • 1 large can (28 oz.) diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 can (400 ml.) light coconut milk
  • 2 Tbs curry powder
Instructions:
  1. Coat the inside of your slow cooker with non-stick spray for ease of cleanup.
  2. Prepare ingredients as described.
  3. Stir curry powder into chicken broth.
  4. Layer ingredients in the slow cooker... potatoes, onions, chicken, tomatoes, chicken broth with curry powder.
  5. Put lid on slow cooker.
  6. Turn setting to HIGH for 15 minutes, then turn down to LOW and let cook for 7 to 8 hours.
  7. Turn setting to off. Prepare addition veggies as desired and divide among serving plates.
  8. Portion leftovers and freeze or store in fridge for one or two days at most.
Per serving, without additional veggies.
Weight Watchers Smart Points  = 6.

Calories 201
Fat 4g
Saturated Fat 3g
Carbohydrates 23g
Sugar 5g
Fibre 4g
Protein 16g

Slow Cooker Chicken Coconut Curry
Getting ready to serve.  Mmmm.  Smells great!

Slow Cooker Chicken Coconut Curry
With some petite green peas added.

Slow Cooker Chicken Coconut Curry
And a bit of yogurt for me.

Slow Cooker Chicken Coconut Curry
Stirred in...



Are you a fan of slow cookers?  All year round, or just in the Winter?

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Chocolate Mint Avocado Protein Mousse

I know you won't be surprised to see this post.  When I first made the Mint Avocado Protein Mousse with vanilla Leanfit whey blend, I was sure it would be delicious in a chocolate version as well.

Chocolate Mint Avocado  Protein Mousse

And I was right.  I finally made it up today and we enjoyed it for an afteroon snack while catching up on some tv movies... lazy Winter Sundays... gotta love them, right?

It makes up in about 2 minutes. I do let it sit in the refrigerator for a couple of hours to chill, and to torture myself with the wait... builds character I am sure!

But I was a bit put off by the color at first... the flavor is fabulous... the chocolate comes through loud and clear and the mint is perfect... and the avocado makes it creamy and rich... but the color... more like caramel than chocolate, would you agree?


Chocolate Mint Avocado  Protein Mousse

Once you get past that, it is clear sailing... or spooning... all the way to the bottom of the dish!


Chocolate Mint Avocado  Protein Mousse


For the recipe and instructions you can refer to the original post here... Mint Avocado Protein Mousse... and let me know which is your favorite... vanilla or chocolate?  Hmmmm... might have to make them both again, just to be sure!  Of course all I did was sub the chocolate whey for the vanilla whey in the recipe... no other changes.

Oh, and just a reminder for my Weight Watchers buddies this mousse counts as only 4 Smart Points. Now that is a bargain!